Benjamin Crane – Navigating Worlds…

    The Multifaceted Odyssey of Benjamin Crane

    PHOTO: Benjamin Crane: Author, Dreamer, and Keeper of Infinite Worlds.

    Exploring Benjamin Crane’s Multifaceted Literary Odyssey

    In the sprawling cosmos of literature, there exists a convergence where the worlds of sci-fi, fantasy, and the resonating threads of human morality interlace. Stepping into this realm, we encountered Benjamin Crane, a luminary who seamlessly melds his passions, experiences, and profound insights into his debut series, The Resistance Chronicles.

    Crane, a seasoned SF enthusiast and self-professed geek, brings a vibrant narrative flair enriched by a tapestry of encounters. His journey unfurls from the vibrant streets of Vancouver, where the actor within him sought the nuances of film and television, to the heartbeats of New York, a city that resonates with artistic pulse. Now nestled in Linlithgow, Scotland, he paints his tales against the backdrop of serene lochs and the historic echoes of Mary, Queen of Scots’ palace, with his loyal companion, Merlin, a cherished part of his world.

    In our candid conversation with Benjamin Crane, he unveils the pages of his literary haven. His eclectic reading tastes, ranging from the thrilling sagas of The Expanse series to the often-overlooked brilliance of playwright Martin McDonagh, offer a glimpse into the myriad inspirations fueling his creative odyssey.

    When asked about his literary soiree, Crane’s hypothetical guest list—encompassing the wit of Stephen Fry and the enigmatic creativity of David Bowie—hints at the vibrant conversations and untold stories that might echo through such a gathering.

    His literary pantheon is as diverse as it is extensive, reflecting a tapestry of authors weaving tales across genres. From the futuristic musings of James S. A. Corey to the psychological depths plumbed by Gillian Flynn, Crane’s reading list is a treasure trove awaiting discovery for enthusiasts of every stripe.

    Yet, Crane’s relationship with literature is not confined to passive consumption; it’s a dynamic interplay that influences his own craft. He delves into books that mirror his genres of choice—science fiction, action-adventure, horror, and military fiction—immersing himself in a tapestry that enriches his imaginative realm.

    However, it’s not merely the genres or authors that move him; it’s the characters navigating the complex landscapes of morality and justice. Their choices, often poignant and riddled with sacrifice, strike a chord within him, eliciting tears and impassioned indignation—a testament to literature’s profound emotional resonance.

    Crane’s journey to the literary realm was marked by challenges, including early encounters with dyslexia. Yet, it was the escape offered by adult fiction that paved the way for his voracious appetite for storytelling—a trajectory that evolved from early struggles to an embrace of the vivid worlds crafted by the written and narrated word.

    As he navigates the labyrinth of literature, Crane’s penchant for revisiting beloved tales repeatedly reveals new nuances, an enduring testament to the depth of his chosen narratives.

    For Benjamin Crane, literature isn’t merely a pursuit of classics or laurels; it’s an ever-expanding horizon, an ongoing voyage of discovery. His candid reflections, unguarded revelations, and boundless enthusiasm invite us to journey alongside him, discovering new worlds and narratives waiting to unfold.

    Benjamin is a long-term SF nerd and geek. This is the first book in his debut series, The Resistance Chronicles. In recent years, he has worked as an IT contractor for various clients. Prior to that, he trained in Vancouver, Canada in acting for film and television then New York, USA. Benjamin currently lives in Linlithgow in Scotland. His dog Merlin enjoys his walks around the loch by Mary, Queen of Scots palace. Benjamin loves his dog very much. You kind find out more about Benjamin Crane, his books and series on his author web portal on the West 16 Publishing website.

     What’s the last great book you read?

    I am currently working my way through The Expanse series, again, I have listened through all the audiobooks on my account many times.

    What’s your favorite book no one else has heard of?

    I have read a lot of plays over the years. And do like Martin Mcdonagh.

    Are there any classic novels that you only recently read for the first time?

    I tied reading Dracula recently, I am still stuck in the carriage on the way to the castle.

    You’re organizing a party. Which two authors, dead or alive, do you invite?

    I bet Stephen Fry would be quite entertaining at a party, and David Bowie has written books, that would probably be a good party.

    Which writers — working today do you admire most?

    Well I only kind of know them through their works that I have read, the bellow list is fairly complete for recent authors.

    Who are your favorite writers? Are there any who aren’t as widely known as they should be, whom you’d recommend in particular?

    Let me have a look down the catalogue on my phone. 

    James S A Corey
    Gillian Flynn
    Christopher G Nutall
    Craig Robertson
    Adrian Tichaikovsky
    Andy Weir
    Isac Hooke
    Clive Cussler
    Dirk Cussler
    Tom Clancy
    Stephen Moss
    David Mitchell
    Stephen King
    Craig Alanson
    Matthew O Duncan
    B V Larson
    Richard Fox
    Brandon Sanderson
    Dan Simons
    Dennis E Taylor
    Richard Fox
    Issac Hooke
    Craig A Falconer
    Arthur C Clarke
    Clive Barker
    Dan Simmons
    Frank Herbert
    H G Wells
    M R Forbes
    Robert R McCammon
    W Bruce Cameron
    George RR Martin
    Terry Pratchett
    Mark Greaney
    Phillip Pullman
    Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
    John Grisham
    David Nobbs
    Scott Bartlett
    Samantha Downing
    Micheal Connelly
    Tana French
    Bram Stoker
    Daniel Defoe
    Jonathan Swift
    Mary Wollstonecraft Shelly
    Morgan Rice
    Robert Louis Stevenson
    Washington Irving
    Sean Platt and Johnny B Truant
    Douglas Adams

    What do you read when you’re working on a book? And what kind of reading do you avoid while writing?

    I tend to write into the early hours so it depends how many hours I have until I need to be getting up again for the day job, if my mind is too active I will fall asleep to an audiobook, it helps to enrich my dreams.

    What moves you most in a work of literature?

    Books with dogs in are a firm favourite, such a Fluke and A Dogs Purpose. Other than that it is characters that go back and make the right moral choice but the hard choice to fight against injustice. Any of those are likely to result in some tears and angry indignation.

    What genres do you especially enjoy reading?

    Science Fiction, Action Adventure, Horror, Military Fiction

    What kind of reader were you as a child?

    As I child I did not particularly like reading. There are two explanations for this. First, the kids’ books I was being given to read back then were somewhat dull tales. This problem was solved by the discovery of adult fiction. I think the first more serious book I tackled was Tolkien’s the Hobbit and subsequently LOR. There were also a fair few Horror and Action type genres I read and then I found Science Fiction and the comedy of Terry Pratchett.

    I have relatively few authors that I like and then I read many of their books. The second reason, a specialist diagnosed me with dyslexia as a kid. This explains my early challenges with both reading and writing, I guess. One of the early things that worked well for me was an electronic typewriter that I used back then, which would beep when I made a spelling mistake. We didn’t have a computer in the house back then. Even today, as part of the writing process, after endless written proofs, I then finish the process with audio, AI narrated, proofs that I review and use to further edit the novel text.

    Reading adult fiction helped me a lot. Many years later, preparing for acting school, I would read the likes of Chekhov and Shakespeare, of course, among many other texts. I always found Chekhov like an incredibly rich chocolate pudding. Incredibly filling and something you don’t want to eat too quickly. Which makes it beautiful but a little heavy going for my taste. Whereas in the fiction books I prefer, I can gorge myself. Since then there was no stopping me from escaping into the fantasy of a book’s story and, more recently audiobooks, it is a very different experience for me than reading a book compared to listening to the narration.

    Have you ever changed your opinion of a book based on information about the author, or anything else?

    There are certain books that there is no danger of me ever reading, but lets steer clear of politics.

    What books do you find yourself returning to again and again?

    I am pretty sure I have re-read or re-listened to every book I own at least three times. I always discover something new in the book on revisiting it.

    What books are you embarrassed not to have read yet?

    I read for pleasure and not great works of literature but great stories. There are many books out there I have not read and many of those are great stories, so they will keep me out of mischief for many years yet.

    What do you plan to read next?

    I don’t really have a list, I browse around online looking for an E book or audiobook that grabs my interest and give it a go. Hopefully discovering a new author that I have not read previously, then I can read all of their other works as well.

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